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Must-Ask Eco Questions: Buying an Electric Vehicle

If you’re shopping around for a new car, you may be considering one of the many electric vehicles (EVs) currently on the market. But will an EV really cut your fuel costs? And which type of EV works best with your driving habits: an all-electric car like the Nissan LEAF or a plug-in model like the Chevy Volt?

Earth911 rounded up seven questions that will help you determine if an EV is a right fit for your lifestyle and budget.

1. How many miles do you drive each day?
Figuring out your regular driving habits will not only help you decide if an EV will fit in with your daily routine, but will also give you insight into what type of EV you should purchase.

If you drive no more than 60-75 miles a day – whether for your roundtrip commute or because you’re chauffeuring the kids around – one of the all-electric cars on the market might just work for you. According to the EPA’s estimates, the Nissan LEAF can run up to 73 miles on a single charge, while the driving ranges of the Mitsubishi i (MiEV) and the Ford Focus Electric are 62 and 76 miles, respectively.

You may be able to squeeze out more miles from a single charge than what the EPA approximates; driving range can increase if you turn off the car’s climate controls, decrease your driving speed and avoid frequent braking and steep inclines.
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